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Portage Lakes Kiwanis delivers holiday cheer

1/2/2014 - South Side Leader
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By Maria Lindsay

Photos: Krista Galloway
COVENTRY/NEW FRANKLIN — Sleigh bells rang Christmas Eve, Dec. 24, during the 62nd annual Portage Lakes Kiwanis Santa Delivery, which made stops at homes in Coventry and New Franklin.

The delivery program has grown since it first started and included 17 routes that featured Santa Claus arriving by sleigh in neighborhoods with gifts for children. To participate, residents dropped off wrapped gifts at designated sites to be given during Santa’s visit.

Shown top right is one Santa waving as he starts off on his route.

Another Santa, portrayed by New York City resident Larry Camp, is pictured right middle during a visit with New Franklin resident Ken Wedel, his son, Adam, and his wife, Chrissy. Camp was visiting the area with former New Franklin resident Bill Elias, who now also lives in New York City. Elias, now 33, has helped out with the Santa Delivery program since he was 14. This time, he drove the truck for Camp and served as his helper.

Also receiving a visit and gift was New Franklin resident Justin Hagen, 14, shown bottom right on Santa’s lap. More of the Hagen family is shown above watching as Justin Hagen’s grandfather, Bill Hagen, gets a gift from Santa.

— By Maria Lindsay

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